Every California resident needs an estate plan, even if they do not think that it is necessary. Despite the common misconception, estate plans are not solely for the wealthy. The need for an estate plan is even greater when someone has a health condition that may worsen as time passes, such as a brain condition.

Planning ahead is critical

When one knows their diagnosis and has a general idea of how things will change, it is important for them to plan ahead to address the contingencies. This includes things like their care and additional help in making key decisions. For example, keeping track of finances and making budgetary and investment choices will get progressively more difficult if their condition changes or worsens. They should do as much as they can now to automate the process. In addition, their estate plan should have a power of attorney that can take effect if their condition worsens past a certain point.

Addressing future healthcare needs

The estate plan must also make provisions for their future healthcare. Advance care directives should be a part of the estate plan so that the person can continue to exert some sort of control over their healthcare in the future. The risks not having a solid estate plan in place include the possibility of the court stepping in and appointing a guardian. In some situations, failure to plan ahead can also result in conflict in the family.

One may be understandably overwhelmed when it comes to an estate plan for someone with a brain condition or another serious health condition. The good news is that an attorney experienced in estate planning may be able to help their client figure out the process from the beginning. The lawyer might help assess the situation and lay out options for their client so they know that their care will be provided for both now and in the future if it is necessary.